STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1717
RE: H.C.R. No. 132
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Thirty-First State Legislature
Regular Session of 2021
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Health, to which was referred H.C.R. No. 132, H.D. 1, entitled:
"HOUSE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION REQUESTING THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH TO SUBMIT A REQUEST TO THE DRUG ENFORCEMENT ADMINISTRATION FOR AN EXCEPTION TO REGULATIONS AND A PETITION TO INITIATE PROCEEDINGS FOR FEDERAL RULEMAKING TO CLARIFY THAT THE STATE-AUTHORIZED USE OF MEDICAL CANNABIS DOES NOT VIOLATE THE FEDERAL CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES ACT,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to request the Department of Health to submit a request to the Drug Enforcement Administration for an exception to regulations and a petition to initiate proceedings for federal rulemaking to clarify that the state-authorized use of medical cannabis does not violate the federal Controlled Substances Act.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from two individuals. Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Department of Health.
Your Committee finds that Act 228, Session Laws of Hawaii 2000, authorizes the use of medical marijuana to treat debilitating medical conditions, including cancer, glaucoma, human immunodeficiency virus, acquired immune deficiency syndrome, and other chronic or debilitating diseases. However, federal law expressly prohibits the use of marijuana, despite the evidence of the benefits of using medical cannabis. Your Committee finds that this lack of uniformity between state and federal laws has repercussions for medical cannabis patients and the State's medical cannabis dispensaries, including loss of employment, discrimination in child custody hearings, eligibility for federally subsidized housing, and others. This measure requests the Department of Health to submit a request to the Drug Enforcement Administration for an exception to marijuana regulations.
Your Committee finds that the intent of the measure would be better served by incorporating a broader request. Therefore, your Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Removing each provision that:
(A) Requests a written acknowledgement from the Drug Enforcement Agency that the inclusion of marijuana as a controlled substance in Schedule I of the federal Controlled Substances Act does not apply to the non-prescription use of cannabis under Hawaii's medical cannabis registry and medical cannabis dispensary programs; and
(B) Offers proposed language for adoption into Title 21 Code of Federal Regulations;
(2) Replacing the request for the Department of Health to submit a request for an exception to regulations and a petition to initiate proceedings for federal rulemaking, with a request that the Department of Health apply to the Drug Enforcement Administration's Office of Diversion Control for an exception under Title 21 Code of Federal Regulations section 1307.03, and request formal written acknowledgment that the listing of marihuana, marihuana extract, and tetrahydrocannabinols as controlled substances in federal Schedule I does not apply to the protected activities in the Hawaii Revised Statutes;
(3) Amending the title to reflect its amended purpose; and
(4) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Health that is attached to this report, your Committee concurs with the intent and purpose of H.C.R. No. 132, H.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommends that it be referred to your Committee on Judiciary, in the form attached hereto as H.C.R. No. 132, H.D. 1, S.D. 1.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Health,
JARRETT KEOHOKALOLE, Chair